In the ring with India’s ace boxers amid Covid-19

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the sporting activities across the world have come to a total halt. Quarantine, equally, is a challenge for the athletes as they have to retain their physical fitness and training routines at a time when one is forced to remain at home. We spoke to India’s ace boxers Vikas Krishan Yadav and Vijender Singh and got the insights about how they are keeping fit and preparing themselves for future fights.

Q: How is the lockdown going for you? Have you been training? How are you taking the postponement of the Olympics?

Vikas Krishan Yadav (VKY): Lockdown is going well as I am spending time with my family after a very long time. Otherwise, I used to travel, and go for camps and competitions. I hardly got enough time with my family which I am now compensating for. As for Olympics, it is important, but protecting ourselves from Covid-19 is a bigger priority. Quarantine is not bad for me however; nowadays I have more time at my disposal and I make it a point to train more and work on myself. It is my dream to win gold for India. For that, concentration is a key factor and right now I am getting enough time to concentrate on myself.

Q: You said that Olympics can happen even after a year, but how affected are the athletes whose qualification dates have been postponed? Is the extended time equally good for them?

VKY: Every athlete is different and the way they train is different too. For me, the postponement is good. All the players must train and practice to reap benefits. Athletes of other countries are unable to do much, as they are stranded and can barely move from wherever they are. It is pretty difficult for them. Nevertheless, the fact that Indian sportsmen and athletes are training is a very good sign and this momentum must prevail. 

Q: How are you spending your lockdown time?

Vijender Singh (VS): It is nice as I am getting a lot of time to spend with my family, but sometimes it gets very boring as you can’t go out and are stuck at home. It’s a mix of feelings, but I am following all the rules and am staying at home.

Q: How do you manage your fitness routine?

VS. I am keeping myself as fit as I can. I train, and I cycle every day. I put on my mask and go cycling for at least 10-15 km in the evening. Roads are without traffic, so it’s easy and enjoyable.

Q: You are a part of the police force, what message would you send across to them? What are your views about the attacks on corona warriors?

VS: It’s very difficult to see this (corona warriors getting attacked). We should condemn these actions in unison. It’s deplorable to attack and hurt those who are fighting the virus on the front lines. Our job is to stay at home; otherwise, the situation will get worse if we fail to follow the basic guidelines.

Q: What do you think will happen to contact sports after Covid-19 is over?

VS: Right now, it is worse; we can see the situation in the US. We were supposed to fight there in May, but the tournament got cancelled. As of now, we haven’t got the next fight card. We Hope for things to get better. It definitely will take some time.

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